In celebration of Black History Month I’m paying tribute to 28 contemporary history makers. These people have inspired me throughout my life, as well as today, and are making a positive impact on our world.
As not only America, but the world will be zoned into Chapter 7 of “Star Wars” come this Friday, there’s plenty of Funky films to be seen. FOUR NEW FUNKY FLICKS, “STAR WARS” & THE GOLDEN GLOBES “Chi-Raq” hit theaters on December 4th. A modern day adaptation of the ancient Greek play Lysistrata by Aristophanes, it’s set against the backdrop of gang violence in Chicago. In a nutshell, women take stand and deny their men sex, until the killing stops.
The “War On Drugs” has been a farce from it’s inception. Created by government as a means of appeasing citizens, the angle was to make the non-thinker believe that law enforcement, actually had a hold or some level of control on drug trafficking. Although the information I’ve compiled in this blurb is contained, it’s fairly meaty, however none of it is new and it only scratches the surface.
Back in the day, “Krush Groove”, was the quintessential hip-hop flick. It was released through Warner Brothers studios in 1985, one year after the success of Prince’s “Purple Rain”, and starred his then protégé and companion Sheila E. Although rap and the culture of hip-hop, are rooted in advocating anti-establishment values and not “selling out”, ever since “Boyz N’ the Hood”, it’s been all about cashing in.
When I think of a movie that’s done multiple sequels, the first one that comes to mind is “Rocky.” After that, there’s “Star Wars,” and it’s now forthcoming follow-ups; the “Star Trek” franchise; Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” and “Hobbit” prequel flicks; “Mission Impossible” (MI5 out 7/31); “Godzilla” movies and “The Fast and the Furious.”
Classic definition: Judged over a period of time to be of the highest quality and outstanding of its kind; i.e. “a classic novel” — A work of art of recognized and established value. This is a definitely a title befitting of the FX television series “American Horror Story.” Created and executive produced by Brad Falchuk and Ryan Murphy, who brought the TV viewing public “Glee” and “Nip/Tuck,” the show is in its fourth FUNKY season and was recently greenlit for a Funkalicious fifth.
Stevie Wonder is taking “Songs in the Key of Life” on the road! He initially announced the tour about a year ago, but dates for the road trip, hit the Internet just last month. I got the news via http://insideplaya.wordpress.com about a week or so ago! I didn’t recall having heard about it before – then I spoke to a fellow Wonder lovers, and they too said they hadn’t heard yet either. I am generally the one to hear about major music events among my immediate family and friends — then our cousin Stevie told us that he wanted to write something for The Museum of UnCut Funk. His inspiration, to talk about his memories connected to the album, made me begin to think of mine…
At the age of 22, Luc Besson released his first short film “L’avant dernier,” (translation: Next to Last) in which he also appeared. It starred Jean Reno, an actor that he would work with repeatedly in future films. Besson’s new film “Lucy” starring Scarlet Johansen hits theaters across the country this week, and it’s nowhere near ‘next to last’, on Luc’s list of movies.
As I was prepping the blog that will follow this one, it occurred to me that I had yet to create this list. Although I’ve done items on a few of them, as this outlet and website continues to grow, I wanted to pay homage to those that have shaped, inspired and influenced my view and love for film.
BLACK IS BEAUTIFUL! That used to be a popular phrase. One that still holds true for me, it doesn’t for a multitude of people… from the land where the black man — the first man — began. Bill Duke and D. Channsin Berry are the directors of “Dark Girls.” Airing on OWN, it premiered last night, I don’t see any future air dates — but you can get all the details and see portions of the film on it’s official site: http://officialdarkgirlsmovie.com
Stephen Whitty is a writer for The Star Ledger, the largest newspaper in New Jersey. Stephen has agreed to allow the Museum Of UnCut Funk to reprint a excerpt from his article.
Without question, one of the most breathtaking beauties to emerge out of the 70’s “Blaxploitation” era was actress Vonetta McGee. This lovely sister, born in San Francisco on January 14, 1945, possessed the complete package; looks, talent and determination which should have made her a marquee name in Hollywood. Instead, this tantalizing, tan, and talented lady found herself in in the land of Blaxploitation, where her some would considerable her talents were laid to waste.
Some would argue that if there was one actress that threatened Pam Grier’s reign as America’s Black glamour queen of the 70’s, it was the bewitching bronze beauty Judy Pace. A former Ebony Magazine model, Judy was a modern day Queen Neferteri, with sexy bedroom eyes, pouting full lips, all gloriously displayed on a petite chestnut brown frame. In color-conscious Hollywood, Judy became one of the first dark-skinned dramatic actresses to be recognized as a sex-symbol. The Daily Variety once referred to her as The most beautiful woman in Hollywood.
“She’s the Godmother of them all…The Baddest One-Chick Hit Squad that ever hit town!” So promised the 1973 promotional poster for the American International Pictures release of Coffy; whose star was a luscious afro-sporting, gun toting, buxom Nubian princess named Pam Grier.